HOLDSWORTH AND STEVE EVANS REACTION
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Thrilled Holdsworth praises Stags standards after thumping opening win
CHAD.co.uk, By Stephen Thirkill
DELIGHTED Stags boss David Holdsworth believes his side can get even better after they crushed Crawley 4-0 at Field Mill on Saturday.
A league debut double from Kyle Perry along with strikes from Rob Duffy and Jake Speight sealed the demolition job to the joy of the noisy Field Mill faithful.
And it could have been ever more for rampant Mansfield as they poured forward with both Daryl Clare and Speight forcing excellent saves out of Rayner in the visiting goal.
After the game Holdsworth paid tribute to his players and called on them to maintain the same standards throughout the season.
"I am very pleased today but I still think that we have more to come," said Holdsworth. "I demand that we keep our standards high. I asked for a high tempo today and we did that very well.
"I thought Duffy and Perry were unplayable at times. We worked hard in pre-season and this result today reflects the hard work of the players.
"This is only one result but it will fill us with confidence. Both Speight and Clare came on as subs and did very well and I'm delighted with the impact that our subs will make this season."
Holdsworth was also full of praise for the competitive nature running throughout the Mansfield Town squad, which saw Gary Silk, Steven Istead and Jon D'Laryea all left to watch the game from the West Stand.
Said Holdsworth: "We have got great competition here and it was very hard leaving players out of the final 16. We will need a full squad in the coming months and we will treat all the players exactly the same.
"I have no favourites here, I think the world of Stevie Istead as a player but I left him out today."
Stags now face one of the trickiest away games of the season when they travel to face Luton Town on Tuesday night.
Fantastic Stags fans receive praise
CHAD.co.uk, By Stephen Thirkill
THE fantastic Field Mill fans received praise from both sets of managers in Saturday after they roared on Stags during their 4-0 thumping of Crawley.
The bumper crowd of over 3,200 had the West Stand rocking as they cheered on Mansfield Town to a memorable opening day victory.
And with crowd support like that Field Mill will no doubt be a tough and intimidating place to go for visiting sides.
Stags boss David Holdsworth said: "The fans were different class today, they were wonderful with their support and were our 12 th man."
His opposite number Steve Evans also paid tribute to Mansfield's fans and said: "The Mansfield fans made a massive difference today to their team.
"They are one of the fancied teams in this division and this will be a very hard place to come."
Goal hero Perry celebrates opening day brace
CHAD.co.uk, By Stephen Thirkill
GOAL hero Kyle Perry spoke of his delight after he bagged an opening day brace on his Stags debut.
Perry struck in the 19th minute with a deflected shot to give Mansfield the lead and two minutes before half-time with a cool finish - helping the Stags to a 4-0 win.
And as well as his two goals Perry, signed during the close season, also linked ADVERTISEMENTup beautifully with Rob Duffy to form what could be a highly profitable strikeforce.
After the game Perry said: "It is a great start for the team but it is just one game and one win.
"It is a great way to start the season and hopefully we can keep up these standards.
"You never expect a score like this but we have been going along very well in training and we have now shown what we can do on the pitch.
"I am really pleased to have got two goals. They had a man down for my first goal but you play to the whistle.
"I wasn't going to stop because it was up to the referee to stop the game.
"For my second goal I saw the left-back was out of position and he played me onside."
And with great competition in the forward areas Perry is now hoping is brace will be enough to secure himself a place in the starting line-up against Luton on Tuesday night.
He said: "I was really pleased to be in the starting eleven today and I hope I will be against Luton as well.
"Theres so much competition for places here and that is great because it drives us all on.
"Luton will be a good test for us, they are a good club with a good fan base and if we can go there and get a result we will be in a good position."
The Reds were on the end of a four nil defeat away at highly fancied Mansfield Town for this opening day Blue Square Premier fixture.
Whilst no one in the Reds camp could accept it was nothing other than a poor team performance it would have to be said that the match referee, Mr Paul Curry, had a day which heavily favoured the home side.
With a game tightly balanced the referee allowed play to continue when central defender Karl Broadhurst was flat on the turf with a head injury. This left the team short on defensive cover at a crucial stage and even then the home striker could only beat Simon Rayner courtesy of a cruel deflection. Their second goal arrived via a mistake from the experienced Chris Giles who allowed a long ball into the box to be controlled by the home striker and slotted home. The third and killer goal of a dismal first half came very much like the opening goal of the day, a decision that left most supporters in the ground dismayed when it was slotted home by a player who was not one or two yards offside but somewhere in the region of eight to ten.
This was extremely harsh for the lads, although far from their best, were certainly not outclassed and very much in the contest.
The second half witnessed a spirited performance by the team despite the three nil half time scoreline. Mansfield Town added a fourth and final goal to the proceeding late in the day after a further mistake by Chris Giles.
The Reds will no doubt be hurting from this defeat and perhaps the nature of such a defeat. However this has come on a day when the match referee who despite allowing the first and third goals to stand also appeared to lack fitness which prevented him from getting around the pitch. In farness the referees lack of fitness to keep him up with play was a factor in not only two of the first half goals but a number of decisions for both teams over the ninety minutes.
Mansfield Town Chairman Andy Perry himself spoke to http://www.crawleytownfc.com and said; “On the day we were no doubt fortunate to get two big, big decisions that to most people in the ground would have thought were kind to Mansfield Town.
“It was never a four nil game and indeed on clear cut chances Crawley Town had a fair few that I can recall. It is a good opening day for us and I have to accept we had more than a slice of luck today especially getting two goals that on any other day would have been ruled out”.
Reds boss Steve Evans spoke after the match and said; “There is no doubt we did not play anywhere near the standards we have set in pre season, our performance overall was poor but it has to be said there were significant mitigating circumstances. Those first half decisions clearly changed the flow of the game. At times we looked tired and disorganised and we need to learn from this very quickly but to defend my players it is hard to have a spark when you are three goals down away from home.
“I am not allowed to comment on the referees performance or indeed two of the three first half goals that he allowed and I will not be drawn on that matter. I told the referee in no uncertain terms in the privacy of his dressing room what I as a manger thought of his performance, especially in the first 45 minutes.
“ My wife knows absolutely nothing about football and if she sat next to Christiano Ronaldo she wouldn't know who he was but even she rang me after the match to say in all the matches she has watched her husbands' teams play, she has never seen a referee get such big decisions badly wrong. This in turn made her ask me the question why a match referee could give such poor decisions especially for two of the goals in the first forty five minutes. As I said earlier my wife knows nothing about football but given today's action at Field Mill I could not possibly disagree with her thoughts when she rang me.”
“We will be back on the training ground tomorrow morning and we will prepare for Forest Green Rovers no differently than we did for Mansfield Town. We have a number of things that we have to put right for Tuesday evening and if today has taught us anything it is that we are very quickly reminded that when you don't work as a team with maximum energy levels you get punished at this level of the game.”
Crawley boss Steve Evans slams "one-sided" referee
CHAD.co.uk, By Stephen Thirkill
CONTROVERSIAL Crawley boss Steve Evans was left hot under the collar after what he saw as a one-sided display by referee Paul Curry.
Evans, who is no stranger to differences of opinions with match officials, blasted the Northumberland referee for not stopping the game after Mansfield opened the scoring in their 4-0 vuctory on Saturday, despite Crawley captain Karl Broadhurst kneelADVERTISEMENT ing on the ground with a slight head injury.
He was also left red with rage by Stags' third goal of the game, which he claimed was "at least five yards offside."
Evans said: "The third goal was five yards offside. For the first goal we have got a defender on the ground holding his head and I do not know why the game was not stopped.
"Mansfield are one of the fancied teams for the title and playing like this they will be right up there. But they will not get as many games here where they get so many decisions going in their favour.
"I told my players to go out there and give it their very best. We do not feel that we got justice from the referee today."
But despite his difference of opinions with the match officials Evans did concede Stags were well deserved winners.
"We are not kidding ourselves, we did not play very well and were well beaten on the day."
Evans: Decisions went against us but Stags deserved win
Evening Post, August 10, 2009
CRAWLEY boss Steve Evans conceded Mansfield Town deserved to win on Saturday.
But the former Boston United manager could not hide his anger that two of the Stags goals were allowed to stand. He believed the game should have been stopped for his skipper Karl Broadhurst going down with a head injury in the box only to get to his feet and deflect Kyle Perry's opener into his own net.
And he also felt Perry's second – Mansfield's third – was offside.
Evans said: "We do not think we have had justice.
"But we were well beaten. Mansfield are a good team and will be up there this season but there will not be many games where so many decisions will go one way.
"The third goal was about five yards offside and the first goal we had a defender down and it was disappointing the game was not stopped."
Stags boss Holdsworth: I want even more
Evening Post, August 10, 2009
DAVID Holdsworth watched his Mansfield Town side destroy Crawley – and then demanded they raise the bar.
The Stags boss was delighted with the way his side crushed their opponents at Field Mill to record an opening-day 4-0 win.
And while he knows a similar performance cannot be churned out every week, he said he still felt they had a lot more to offer.
Holdsworth said: "I cannot argue with that but I demand certain standards and I still think there is more to come. It was a wonderful result and on reflection, there is still more.
"It is imperative you keep your standards very high. To do that on another 45 occasions would be super-human. But I was very pleased with that."
The Mansfield boss said the club is a whole different beast to the one he inherited at the start of January when he took the job.
He said: "We are not going to get carried away. I am not bothered whom we play or where we play, it is about standards. And our standards are impeccable.
"The professionalism, the quality, the power, the pace, being stronger, fitter – that is what we are now from when we turned up in January. Now it is a different imprint at this club, it is about standards. I demand it. I expect it.
"Our dressing room now is full of quality players and the temperament is totally different."
Holdsworth opted for Kyle Perry and Rob Duffy up front on Saturday and they replied with three goals between them.
"At times I felt Kyle Perry and Duffers were unplayable," he said. "They will be a tough act for most centre halves.
"But I am not surprised by the result. I worked hard in pre-season, I demanded that quality and the result is a reflection of that. The boys deserve a pat on the back.
"It is only one game, although we will go to Luton tomorrow with a lot of confidence."
Stags striker Perry: Fight for places spurred me on
Evening Post, August 10, 2009
KYLE Perry bagged himself a brace in the emphatic victory against Crawley.
And the powerful Mansfield Town frontman put his impressive display down to the competition for places.
The former Port Vale man and Rob Duffy got the nod to start in front of Daryl Clare and Jake Speight.
Perry grabbed two goals and Duffy another before Clare come off the bench to go close, while Speight marked his substitute appearance with the final goal in Saturday's 4-0 win.
And Perry said: "We have played forward football all the way through that game and it is great to see. Three of the attackers got the goals so there is great competition there for places and hopefully I have put myself in contention for tomorrow night.
"With performances like that, we have to keep to the same standard again.
"We have all done so well in pre-season, playing good teams in Leicester, Walsall and Hartlepool and who knows who will play up front? It could go any way."
But the striker warned about getting above their station as they prepare to travel to Luton tomorrow night.
"It was a fantastic result and it is about complacency now. We have to stick to our own high standards," he said. "It is a great start but we have to keep going.
"We have to keep our heads and not get too complacent. The lads have great heads on their shoulders and it is about keeping our feet on the ground. The fans are buzzing but we have to be realistic."
Mansfield Town 4 Crawley Town 0
Evening Post, August 10, 2009
IN HIS programme notes, Stags chairman Andrew Perry welcomed in the new season.
Simple words, stating: "All our dreams and aspirations start today."
As the first whistle blew to signal the start of a second season in the Blue Square Premier, he had noted it was 259 days to its ultimate conclusion, a time when the Stags could have reached the 'Promised Lane'.
A long time, but at the start of every season fans, players, managers, chairman – everybody – has a right to be optimistic.
And if all their dreams and aspirations started on Saturday, what a way for them to begin.
Gone was the ramshackle pre-season that stifled their first campaign in non-league and in came a way of working planned with immaculate precision by boss David Holdsworth.
Extra training through May, a tough schedule on resuming at the end of June, and all the hard toil led to that first game against Crawley.
And the reward was a 4-0 opening-day drubbing of Steve Evans' men on home soil. It is only the start but it was the performance everyone had hoped for.
Two goals from Kyle Perry, one from fellow strike partner Rob Duffy and Jake Speight followed up with another when he came off the bench made it the perfect opening.
But when asked if it was a surprise, Holdsworth looked almost puzzled as he said not at all, he had been working towards this for weeks, months even.
If anything, he knows his squad is capable of more. But he will not get carried away, although he wants the standards maintained.
He knows that is not always going to happen. But what his squad demonstrated on Saturday is they are more than capable.
A key example of the way Holdsworth has organised his squad came on nine minutes when new captain Gary Mills pulled his hamstring.
It came after a strong start from Mansfield, in which both Ryan Williams and Perry forced saves from Simon Rayner.
But instead of disrupting their pattern, the introduction of Matt Somner allowed matters to flow just as fluently as he slotted into the central midfield berth without any fuss.
And on 15 minutes, Perry handed Stags the lead. It came via a slice of luck but, nonetheless, it found the net.
With Crawley skipper Karl Broadhurst down in the box clutching his head, the Stags continued and when Williams slipped Perry the ball, Broadhurst jumped back to his feet to avert the danger. But all he managed to do was deflect Perry's shot, seeing it loop high over the stranded Rayner and drop just under the bar.
Crawley had offered a few threats of their own, Eddie Hutchinson going close with a header before Marriott denied Ben Smith. But two quick goals before half time killed Crawley.
First, a pinpoint ball over the top from Craig Armstrong caught out the visiting defence and Duffy controlled it well before finishing it off at the second attempt five minutes before the break.
It got better for the Stags three minutes later when Perry scored another after finding himself beyond the defence, albeit with Crawley calling for offside, and he took his time before firing through Rayner's legs.
It was game over as Williams continued to show his class and Perry and Duffy looked unplayable, their brute strength unsettling even the big defenders from London.
The second half saw more of the same and you had to feel sorry for Rayner, producing top saves from Kyle Nix's free kick and Daryl Clare's header but still having to pick the ball out of his net on four occasions.
Prolific non-league striker Clare would have been upset not to start but Perry and Duffy justified selection with three goals between them.
And another substitute, Speight, shone and got a goal for his efforts, a smart finish capping off the 4-0 win and he should have had another before the end, denied by the legs of the Crawley stopper.
It proved the competition for places with the substitutes making an impression and an example of the strength in depth came with Gary Silk in the stands – last season's player of the year not even making the squad.
In the end, a comprehensive win. But rather than an indication of how the season will end up, it is just an early pat on the back for Holdsworth and his men.
Perry's call about aspirations and dreams beginning on Saturday is fully justified. But his note about 45 games to follow should also quell the enthusiasm of anybody getting too carried away with Saturday's win.
There is a long way to go. But no Stags fan can be begrudged the opportunity to bask in the glory of what was a textbook win to kick off the season.
But there are still at least 257 days to go to see if they can fulfil their dream of a return to the Football League at the second time of asking.
Even the wife says ref had a stinker
Sussex Argus, Monday 10th August 2009
By Bruce Talbot
YOU do not need Steve Evans to confirm that referee Paul Curry had a shocker at Field Mill on Saturday – just ask his wife!
Evans chose his words carefully after Crawley made a disappointing start to the Blue Square premier campaign and was quick to point out that a ruthless Mansfield exposed the shortcomings in a new-look team containing six league debutants.
The scoreline flattered the Stags but they were helped by a couple of refereeing blunders at crucial times.
After 15 minutes Karl Broadhurst was left on the turf after Rob Duffy accidentally whacked him on the side of the head, drawing blood.
But instead of stopping the game for an obvious head injury he allowed Kyle Perry to charge into the box.
By this time Broadhurst had staggered to his feet but to complete his misery Perry's shot struck his outstretched leg as he tried to block and it looped over Simon Rayner.
It got worse. Two minutes before the break Duffy looked as astonished as everyone else in the ground to be given onside when it looked as if he was at least five yards off. He made no mistake, adding to Perry's simple second two minutes later. Game over.
Evans had calmed down 30 minutes after the final whistle, but not much.
He said: “I've got to be careful what I say but my wife watched the game and she thought it was the worst refereeing performance she has seen.
It's not often a woman is right about football and Mrs Evans wouldn't know who he was if Ronaldo was sitting next to her but she was right about what she saw.
“(Mansfield manager) David Holdsworth is an honest man and he said he would have been disappointed had both goals been given against his side.
“They got the breaks but they are a good team and their fans were magnificent. But when they got the first we had started to get on top. It changed the game but there was bizarre decisions throughout.”
As he climbed the team bus Broadhurst looked as if he had just stepped out of the ring, not off a football pitch.
He said: “I got a whack on the side of the head, went down and when it's a head injury the referee should stop play. Simon Rayner was shouting “I need you” so I got up even though I was still holding my face, the guy got his shot in, I have stuck a leg out to block it and it has looped over the keeper. It knocked the stuffing out of us.
“The third goal was ridiculously offside. I was the furthest forward but when I asked the linesman he was pointing at me. We can't make any excuses though – we were poor but the good thing about football is you get a quick opportunity to put things right.”
Evans had his players back on the training ground yesterday ahead of tomorrow's home match against Forest Green Rovers and admitted there is plenty of work to do.
Three of the new faces – Broadhurst, Ben Smith and Danny Powell – only arrived this week and it was obvious which side had the more settled pre-season.
Evans went for a surprisingly attacking formation, effectively playing four strikers, but his central midfielders Smith and Eddie Hutchinson were over-run at times while Chris Giles, who came in because skipper Adam Quinn was nursing a calf strain, had a torrid time against Mansfield's front two.
Perry exploited a huge gap down the middle when he latched onto Craig Armstrong's ball to make it 2-0 on 41 minutes and substitute Jake Speight finished things off with the fourth seven minutes from time.
Evans added: “We can't hide from the fact that we didn't play well but we don't think we've had any justice either.”
Like Mr Curry, Crawley's season can only get better.
Mansfield Town: Marriott, Gardner, Jones, Garner, Armstrong; Briscoe (sub: Speight 65), Mills (sub: Somner 9), Nix, Williams; Duffy (Clare 73), Perry. Unused subs: Sandercombe, Graham.
Crawley: Rayner; Wilson (sub: Rusk 16), Broadhurst, Giles, Rents; Powell (Malcolm 51), Smith (Cogan 51), Hutchinson; Cook; Louis, Ademeno. Unused subs: Forrest, Jordan.
Referee: P. Curry (Essex)
Latest | August 2009